whole roast squash with saffron rice

This recipe can be made with a pumpkin or any large squash or several smaller ones like the munchkin pumpkins. The rice recipe is from the Moro cookbook and they use the saffron rice to stuff a butterflied leg of lamb, because it is fragrant and deliciously flavours the meat, but as I don’t really eat meat I thought it would be fantastic as a stuffing for a squash or pumpkin. It also looks amazing as a centre piece on the dinner table, and would be delicious roast potatoes and a salad or any roast. I love it with garlicky yogurt and have just discovered Alpro are doing a vegan Greek yogurt in Morrison’s which is utterly delicious.

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spaghetti with broccoli anchovies and pine nuts

This traditional Italian recipe for spaghetti with broccoli is deceptively delicious. It’s got a great combination of flavours with saffron, onions and wine. There is also a sweetness from the currants which makes it taste all the more delicious. Its got really typical Italian flavours and is normally made with Bucatini. I think it’s perfect for a dinner party or dinner date, (you can halve the ingredients) just serve it with a salad and a glass of wine. Job done.

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vegetable tajine with harissa

This tajine has all the flavours of a tasty Moroccan dish.  It’s perfect for a warming supper or dinner party now it’s colder.  It has that lovely combo of savoury and sweet because it’s got delicious spices and dried apricots in it. It’s super easy as it’s all baked in the oven and needs little attention. Perfect if you are busy. I serve it with saffron couscous, garlicky yogurt (Alpro have just started doing a sugar free plain yogurt) and my Moroccan orange salad, recipe in the index, and it’s a big hit with vegetarians and non vegetarians.

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lobster risotto

A perfect romantic Valentine’s dinner for two or more if it’s a dinner party, just double or triple the quantities for the amount of people you are feeding. This easy risotto tastes delicious and before you think it’s too expensive to cook, I got a frozen lobster for £5.00 from Lidl. It’s a bit of work getting the meat out, but after that it’s easy. For the stock, I can’t praise Knorr fish stock pots highly enough. You would be hard pushed to make a better stock and they are a store cupboard essential round in my kitchen.

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David Beckham’s risotto

This risotto was put on Twitter by David Beckham when he cooked it for his family. I looked at the pictures of him proudly cooking it, and I checked out the ingredients and worked out it was a risotto Milanese. I have recreated it so you can try a bit of the Beckham. It’s a really rich, creamy risotto that would work well with a crisp lettuce salad dressed with my vinaigrette to counterbalance the richness of the risotto which would be a delicious dinner for two on a date night.

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spanish style clams

I have taken the flavours of a classic Spanish clam stew and rejigged it so it tastes great even though there is no meat in it. Normally it would have Chorizo in it, so I used smoked paprika which is the flavor of Chorizo instead and it tastes just as good. It’s a really easy recipe and great for a date night. Also, the frozen Clams were a bargain £3.59 for 500g in the freezer section of Waitrose. I always buy a few boxes and keep them in the freezer just in case.

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paella

Hola…this is one of my favourite dishes ever…I can close my eyes and imagine I am having dinner in a square in Barcelona under a palm tree on a warm summer night. But I’m in London, and the.seafood is from my excellent local Primrose Hill fishmonger, La Petite Poissonnerie. This recipe is created with all the amazing moorish flavours that are so special and it is really simple to make and only needs one pan. If you are feeding more people just double or triple the quantities, as needed. Just make sure you use a big enough pan.

Serves 2-3.

Ingredients:

2 cloves of minced garlic
3 cups of hot fish stock (I use a half of a Knorr fish Stock Pot, they are brilliant)
A tiny sprig of fresh chopped oregano (or 1/2 a teaspoon of dried)
1 tablespoon of sweet Spanish Sherry
1 small finely chopped white onion
½ finely chopped red pepper
1 cup of paella rice (or risotto rice)
¼ to ½ a teaspoon of hot smoked paprika (depending on how hot you like it)
½ a cup of tinned chopped tomatoes
½ teaspoon of saffron threads
600g approx of mixed raw seafood, I used squid, prawns, clams and mussels
½ cup of frozen petit pois
A sprig of finely chopped parsley
Lemon zest from 1-2 lemons
Salt and pepper to taste (can be done at the end of cooking)

oh and a glug of olive oil!

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